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Golden Girl 'Blanche' Passes Away

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Rue McClanahan, one of the "Golden Girls," has died at the age of 76.

According to The Associated Press, McClanahan began her career on the stage before she was cast in the TV sitcoms "Maude" and "Mama's Family." But she was perhaps best known for her role as Blanche Devereaux in the comedy series "The Golden Girls." Her co-stars on the popular series were Bea Arthur, Betty White and Estelle Getty.

McClanahan's character was known for delivering hilarious, raunchy lines that flipped stereotypes about "little old ladies."

"The Golden Girls" was an instant hit when it debuted on NBC in fall 1985 and won best comedy series at the Emmy Awards in 1986. All four leading women eventually won Emmy Awards over the years as well.

Her manager said McClanahan died early Thursday of a stroke. She had undergone treatment for breast cancer in 1997 and later lectured to cancer support groups on "aging gracefully."